Tenacity and patience are a must when comparing home insurance policies. Usually, people would simply jump to the end and simply compare the annual premium that each insurance company has quoted them. This can be a drastic mistake as coverage amounts are mainly dependent on the insurance policy’s components. A substantial reduction in a single coverage amount can cause a sizable decrease in the premium. The problem will surface when a claim is rejected because of insufficient coverage under the policy.
The smart shopper will compare each and every amount on each and every policy they’re considering with the use of a spreadsheet. For every insurance company, there should be a column, with each row having the same classification. If you make exact comparisons, you can easily spot discrepancies which explain why the premium amounts are not the same. Notes you write after each category will will serve as a reminder for the reasons you decided to drop a certain insurer from consideration.
When making standard home insurance policy comparisons, keep in mind that their prices will likely not vary substantially. Home insurers give out discounts to encourage homeowners to keep their property low-risk – for example, by installing fire suppression devices or CCTV cameras.
Certainly, a wise home insurance shopper will use every single discount possible. Whatever money you have invested in the recommended risk mitigation measures can be recouped through much lower insurance premiums in the next few years. And if you stay with the same company, your loyalty will be rewarded through multi-policy discounts on your life and auto insurance policies.
The limits for liability insurance are increased as insurers know that litigation against the policyholder can happen. In the event of a major lawsuit, additional coverage can be provided through an umbrella liability insurance policy, where the property and livelihood of the insured are guarded against loss.
So what should you consider when making comparisons among different providers?
First of all, industry reputation. Look up your prospective providers’ third-party ratings online. In the U.S., for instance, all insurance providers offering homeowner’s insurance policies are rated by AM Best Company. The ratings are given based on the actual performance of the company in various areas, including claim handling. Low ratings reflect a huge number of customer complaints filed against the provider.
Another thing you should consider about an insurer is its customer service model. Standard support is provided by a central customer service, a model accepted by some policyholders. Local agents give guidance through the entire term of the policy and give recommendations for coverage adjustments when needed.
Lastly, timely response to a claim is of course critical to any homeowner. Experienced claims adjusters provide accurate estimates to cover important repairs to the property.